Obituary: Thomas David Traynor |

Obituary: Thomas David Traynor

Thomas David Traynor
Provided Photo
Thomas David Traynor March 21, 1948 – May 29, 2020

Someday, someway…maybe I’ll understand you Someday, someway…maybe you’ll understand me -Marshall Crenshaw

Thomas David Traynor died on Friday, May 29th of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was 72. Tom grew up in Grand Junction, Colorado. He loved to share stories of his early years there, including fond memories of working in the Dairy Queen his mom owned, working on the peach harvest loading crates onto the train, and of being an award-winning member of the debate team in high school.

He went to Mesa Junior College in Grand Junction and finished his undergraduate degree at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. He earned a PhD in Philosophy from Miami University in 1978 after completing his residency in clinical psychology at the University of Texas in San Antonio, and then became a board-certified psychologist in the state of Colorado in 1981.

Tom moved to Steamboat in the mid-1970s after he was recruited as the first psychologist to help establish and develop the new Steamboat Mental Health Center. While working at Steamboat Mental Health, he also established a private practice, was the founder and director of the Routt County Alcohol Council, developed a group practice of independent mental health professionals, and worked passionately as a consultant for many years doing executive training and development, as well as team building, conflict resolution, and strategic planning.

He took any chance he got to spend time detailing his cars, making trips to Ace Hardware, dining with family and friends at his favorite local restaurants, or going on adventures with his wife and family. Well…maybe the adventures with his wife and family weren’t so much something he did “any chance he got” …but he went along with them in good spirit. He was an expert napper, made a perfect Manhattan, cut a fine figure in Carhartt overalls, and would lend anyone anything they needed to get a chore, errand, or job done.

Tom is survived by his wife, Nancy Young, his stepchildren Rebecca, Josh, and daughter-in-law Jung, his grandchildren Gabe, Hana, and Oliver, his brothers Rick and Steve Traynor, and their families.

At Tom’s request there will be no service, but please visit the virtual memorial to sign the guestbook and share a story or a photo. In lieu of flowers or cards, and only if you’re financially able at this time, the family asks that you donate to the Yampa Valley Community Foundation, or a local nonprofit of your choosing.

And the next time you drive thru a car wash, crank up The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, The Beatles, or any old-school Doo-wop music, and think of Tom.

I can still hear us laughing on the front porch in the dark There are days when I know that I’ve traveled so far That I’ll never find the road leading back to the start Still I go home again in my heart Still I go home again in my heart In my heart, in my heart -Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

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